Marty Lurie Talks San Francisco Giants Baseball

Red Sox Angels Are On Their Way to October Baseball

Batter Up July 8th, 2007
The All-Star break gives each team in baseball the opportunity to reflect on the first half. Each front office decides whether its team is in the race for keeps. If the answer is in the affirmative, it’s now time to assess what moves might be necessary to bring the flag home for their club.
The AL East is still a one-team race with Boston the leader. The Red Sox must be cautious not to rush injured starting pitcher Curt Schilling back before he is absolutely ready. When lefty starter Jon Lester is ready to return from his minor league rehab, Julian Tavarez should go to the ‘pen.

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The Yankees won’t go down without a fight. One two-week hot streak will get them back into the wild card race. With the Yankees suddenly showing their age on offense, the team now must seriously consider meeting Alex Rodriguez’s salary demands if and when he opts out of his contract this fall.
Toronto has discovered two gems in starting pitchers Dustin Magowan and Shawn Mar*****. Unfortunately, ace Roy Halladay hasn’t been the same and AJ Burnett is spending more time on the DL than the mound. Hitters Vernon Wells and Frank Thomas are capable of carrying the offense. Toronto will stick around the playoff contenders until September.
The Minnesota Twins found their offense and ended the White Sox season with their 32-14 doubleheader pounding of the ChiSox on Friday. If Minnesota picks up a veteran starter and a leftfielder the Twins become legitimate contenders for October baseball.
Detroit must add a stable arm to its porous ‘pen. Once Jim Leyland finds the right combination to hold a late inning lead, Detroit will waltz to the division title.
Cleveland has played excellent baseball the first half. Still the Tribe must go after two reliable relievers to hold off the Twins and any other wild card pursuers. Cleveland’s starting rotation has yet to click on all cylinders too.
The Angels control their own destiny. Once Los Angeles settles its current two-man ‘pen crisis, the Angels will be fine unless the A’s and Mariners both close the gap on the Halos in head to head competition.
Seattle believes it can make the playoffs. If Seattle adds one top flight-starting pitcher they might be right. Seattle’s ‘pen is playoff quality. The Mariners are playing with confidence. Adrian Beltre is looking like the player who hit 48 home runs for the Dodgers in ‘04.
The A’s are a .500 team right now. It’s difficult to make the playoffs in the AL simply based on steady starting pitching. The A’s need a big bat in the worst way. DH Jack Cust is a fine story, but he is not a clean up hitter. Help is needed either from within the organization (Daric Barton or Mike Piazza) or through trades, but something has to change around this club.
The Mets, Braves, and Phillies will fight for the NL East title. All three teams need pitching help. If the Mets don’t pull the trigger on a trade for a frontline starter, they could actually lose this division.
The Brewers and the Cubs will go neck and neck all summer in the NL Central. The Cubs need catching help and one more arm in the ‘pen. Don’t count on it Cub fans, but Kerry Wood might be back on the mound shortly after the break.
The Dodgers have great young talent. Give LA some more veteran starting pitching and they might win the West. San Diego and Colorado will join the Dodgers in a terrific September battle for the flag.

If your team isn’t mentioned above, start planning for next season now.


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